Well, I like my games to have a combination of good story, great gameplay, innovation, nice graphics, good characters, memorable audio, and a large amount of content. If a game can provide me with all these things then I'm completely sold. Although I don't mind if some games are missing some of these aspects. For example, Mario games don't have a heavy story or strong characters because it focuses on innovative gameplay. As much as I'm for a good heavy story I'm still a sucker for having a good time playing a fun game like Mario or Saint's Row. It could also work the other way, I can still enjoy story driven games even if it does lack in the gameplay department. Take Alan Wake for example, the story is what motivated me to keep playing and the character of Alan Wake was just so great. He wasn't your big macho hero, he was a regular guy just like you and me, he was real. But that doesn't necessarily mean the gameplay is broken, it's still completely playable just not really innovative or anything special. I guess you can say the gameplay is simple, but that's okay with me.
I also love it when a game has you humming or thinking about it's music when you're not even playing the game. It's games like Halo, The Legend of Zelda, Super Mario, Metroid, Gears of War, and many other great games that just have such great soundtracks and memorable tunes and sound affects. I like my games to have this aspect because music is just so great in general and combining that with your game is just pure genius. It's what makes said game so memorable and unforgettable. Sometimes I can just stop what I was doing in a game just to hear those great tunes. Amazing visuals and unique styles are also something I really look for in a game. It's what makes the game stand out, it brings the game to life. It's always good when you find yourself stopping to enjoy your surroundings. That's what I really like about games like The Legend of Zelda Skyward Sword, Super Mario Galaxy, and Halo Reach. They each have their own unique styles and amazing environments with breath taking visuals to back it up.
Content is another important factor games need. It's always great to be finished with a game but have a reason to go back to it in the future. That's what I loved about Batman Arkham City, Splinter Cell Conviction, Grand Theft Auto, Gears of War 3, and of course The Legend of Zelda. Extra modes are always a nice addition to video games because sometimes you just want to kick a** or just challenge yourself without redoing the entire story and being able to do that in a game is just awesome. It also doesn't hurt to get side tracked from the main game to do other objectives or fun activities because it just helps change the pace of the game and stops it from being repetitive, it adds replay value. It's those things that I look for in games, because they're all important and help define a video game as art.
-Facepalm- It was a figure of speech/play on words. Thread Closed is a pun on Case closed .-.
Well, graphics is always a nice bonus. If the graphics don't show the full power of the console, it's laziness and I lose interest. But what keeps me going is the story(Mother 3) and gameplay.(Wii Zelda titles) Re-playability if it is a good game, and I suppose if it's life-simulation/racing etc.(A game that truly has no finish) should have DLC, like new characters, furniture, and etc. Music is also keeps me going through games, games like Zelda, Mother, Sonic, Jet Grind Radio and many other games have such catchy tunes that make the game so much more interesting and motivational. Like Turo, there are a couple of exceptions, like Mario and Jet Grind Radio. Fun, basic, new, addictive and still have some great pros about them.
For me it's gameplay way out in front, then replayability, nonlinearity is nice, and music can be cool but really it wouldn't bother me if all games were silent. Notably story and graphics do very little for me. For example I think Twilight Princess would have been a better game if they eliminated the story completely and downgraded the detail in the graphics but added more sidequests or a dungeon or two. I'm not completely blind to story and graphics though; I think Wind Waker has the best story and graphics of any Zelda game but those aspects have very little impact on why I like it. I kind of wish that every Zelda game was a little more like the original game- nonlinear, replayable (how is it the only game with a true 2nd quest), little emphasis on graphics, and a ridiculously basic story.
Also it's nice if you feel like you're learning something or exercising your mind like in Trauma Team or the Professor Layton series.
Some of my favorite games are MM, OOT, WW, LOZ, ALTTP, the rest of the Zelda series, the entire main series of Mario (especially 3, world, 64, and sunshine), and the Donkey Kong Country series (especially 2 and Returns). The one thing these games have in common I think is that they emphasize gameplay over everything else- it's why I'm a Nintendo fanboy. Also I realized early on that my favorite thing about the Nintendo Wii was that the Wii Remote turned sideways is essentially a NES controller- that just screams good, simple gameplay.
In my opinion, gameplay is arguably the most important aspect of any game, followed by sound, graphics, and finally story.
Gameplay is a given; if a game is not fun to play, than why should I bother playing it? That's why I'm drawn to Mario, Zelda, Metroid, and other Nintendo franchises. I also really enjoy games that are replayable, and I find that non-linear gameplay makes games more replayable. In addition, games should have comfortable, simple controls.
Sound is another aspect of games that I believe has to be done right. Sound effects, when done correctly, can really make a good first impression on a game. However, great, memorable soundtracks really create a lasting impression, which is another reason why I adore Nintendo franchises. I've hummed quite a few songs from the Mario, Zelda, and Metroid series, for instance. Not only that, but good music tracks add depth to an otherwise shallow game, setting the appropriate atmosphere.
Graphics are less important to me than gameplay or sound. While good graphics create a good first impression on a game and eye candy is always nice, I feel that after a while I stop noticing them. I tend to have lower standards for graphics because of this.
Story is even less important to me than graphics are. While I appreciate great stories, I don't think you should sacrifice gameplay or sound in the name of a better story. After all, video games are not books. I found that many of the games I like have simpler stories or barely a story at all, because the developers had focused more of their effort on gameplay or sound.
I prefer story to anything else. Gameplay is second. The reason I enjoy story is so whenever someone can come up to me and say "why do you like video games? You're just wasting your life and there's no value in it." I can say "Why do you like movies and books? At least I'm interactive with my story and not just sitting there watching a screen." Nah not really but that is a perk to enjoying the story in a game. I love story for the reason stated above. I can interact with the story I'm reading. Take one of my favorites, the one game I wish they would reboot and make into modern day graphics and give voice overs to. The Legend of Dragoon. That game had such an amazing story that I've been able to play it over many many times and not once have I ever gotten tired of it. Coupled with it's turn based addition battle system and I was in love. It's really a great game and anyone a fan of Final Fantasy or any story game for that matter should give it a shot. It's old, for the PS1 but man is it good.
There are several important factors to me to consider in a game. I find gameplay, music and controls to be some of the most important. However, my single most important thing is Replay Value. The reason I love games like Super Smash Bros. so much is because of the millions of things to do in it.
Music is not as important to me mostly because I don't realize how good or bad it is until after my initial play through. However what is important to me is character development and well paced story. I need incentive to keep playing.
For me, there are two key things that I need in a video game:
1. It has to be fun.
2. I have to be able to connect with the characters and themes of the game.
These two factors decide whether or not I can enjoy a game, so I would consider them to be the most important aspects of any video game. Of course, these factors are very subjective, so what I consider fun and what kinda of game universes I can connect with may differ from you.
for me its gameplay, graphics and storyline.
there are some games, like Sims an Harvest moon where its pretty simple not much to it, that I do like as well.
but I really like games with a good story to follow, like how it is with Zelda.